All business decisions impact and are impacted by "the numbers." Accountants work with individuals, small businesses, large corporations, government agencies, nonprofits and others–to keep their finances in check. UNI's accounting program is dedicated to your success beyond your college years, which is why it's been recognized as one of the best programs in the country.
It is that solid preparation that allows our graduates to pursue a wide range of careers, from public accounting to business ownership. Accounting is a degree that makes sure you REALLY understand business! Even more, the HUGE number of accounting jobs ensures you will always have one!
Median Corporate Controller Salary
according to Robert Half 2020 Salary Guide. Starting salaries for accounting majors range from $54k-$60k according to NACE (2019).
Our accounting graduates enter their chosen profession quickly with multiple job offers in hand. In many years, 100% of our graduates have a position within 6 months of graduation (2020).
CPA Pass Rate
Our accounting graduates pass the CPA at a much higher rate compared to the state average of 33%.
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CPA or Non-CPA Track
While junior-level accountants might handle the more general accounting tasks, senior-level Certified Public Accountants (CPAs) are typically more involved in guiding big picture financial decision making for their entire company. The benefits that come with being a CPA include increased trust, opportunity and financial reward–some of which are not standard with a general accounting degree.
Non-CPA track accounting majors can work in several different positions in a variety of companies without CPA certification. As an accountant, you can work for big and small businesses, school districts and various non-profit and government organizations. There are many executives, vice presidents and CFOs in Fortune 500 companies who are not CPAs.
A Top 3 CPA Exam Pass Rate
The CPA exam consists of four parts. A student must pass all four parts to become a CPA. Before the digital age, students were required to take all parts of the exam over two days, which provided clear pass/fail statistics. Today, the test is given online with flexibility on when students sit for each part. Each part is scored separately, but students still must pass all four parts to be licensed.
Due to the exam’s flexibility, many students who start the CPA exam never finish it, delaying their CPA licensing progress. CPA review courses that are taken the final semester at UNI lead to the majority of our students completing and passing the CPA exam before their first day of employment.
“The CPA Success Index ranks the University of Northern Iowa as one of the best schools in the nation for students who want to pass the CPA exam.”
University of Northern Iowa’s accounting program will arm you with the skills to collect, analyze and interpret financial data so you can efficiently communicate the impact with decision-makers within the organization. Frequent careers and job titles in accounting include:
- Business Consultant
- Financial Analyst
- Internal Auditor
- Personal Banker
- Risk Assurance Consultant
- Tax Accountant
- Tax Associate/Specialist
- Technology Consultant
UNI is nationally known as a top institution for CPA professionals because we tie professional-level exam preparation into the curriculum. If you plan to practice as a CPA you’ll be responsible for completing a predetermined amount of semester hours. Iowa and most states require 150 credit hours to become a CPA. Typical CPA and non-CPA career track courses include:
- Principles of Financial Accounting
- Principles of Managerial Accounting
- Intermediate Accounting
- Advanced Accounting
- Cost Accounting
- Accounting Information Systems
- Income Tax
- Advanced Tax
- VITA: Volunteer Income Tax Assistance
- Legal Concepts for Accountants
- Government and Not-for-Profit Accounting
- Principles of Fraud Examination
- CPA Review courses
VITA Tax Assistance
Each year, UNI accounting students prepare hundreds of tax returns free. The Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) program was established by the Internal Revenue Service to help those who may find it difficult to pay for tax preparation services. Certified volunteers receive training to help prepare basic tax returns in communities across the country. The UNI accounting department staffs a site to serve members of the Cedar Valley community.
Beyond the Classroom
Shape your leadership skills and have some fun by joining a student organization.
The University of Northern Iowa Accounting Club is the premier student organization for accounting students and is well-respected by business professionals across the Midwest. As a UNI Accounting Club member, you’ll have access to the latest career information, attend networking events with potential employers or recruiters and increase your social interaction with other students who are majoring in accounting.
Ever wanted to be your own boss? Accounting is a great way to enter the business consulting field. Enhance your skills by joining the UNI Entrepreneurs Club. This group of students actively focuses on developing and utilizing the skills necessary to form functioning revenue-earning identities.